Parents these days tend to invest more money and time in nurturing their children. Besides academic preparation, many will explore different forms of enrichment programmes, such as music, singing, dance and art lessons to unleash their children’s creative potential. Among them, piano is one of the most popular music instruments for children.
For new piano players planning to buy their own piano, the first thing to consider is whether to buy a brand new or second-hand piano. This depends on a variety of factors such as price, and the level of interest or commitment to learn. If your child is likely to learn piano for the longer term and requires a higher quality piano to practise daily, then investing in a brand new piano may make financial sense. But if you are uncertain about their attention span, then getting a second-hand piano might be a better option or wait a while longer before committing to the purchase.
On the other hand, if you are intending to buy for your own usage, you will need to assess your own level of commitment towards learning the piano and if you have plans to pursue it as a profession.
How Much Does A Brand New Piano Cost?
There are many different types of piano (grand, upright, hybrid, stage, digital) and the prices can vary significantly. For instance, a low-range digital piano costs below $1,000 compared to a grand piano that costs easily over $10,000. Other factors that affect the retail price of a piano also include the brand, country of origin, features and warranty.
Yamaha, Cristofori and Kawai are some of the popular piano brands in Singapore. You can either purchase a brand new piano directly from the brand’s website, physical store, or an authorised piano dealer such as Robert Piano, Chiu Piano and Absolute Piano.
Below is a general price range across different types of brand new pianos:
|Digital||A mix of an acoustic piano and an electronic keyboard, designed to emulate an acoustic piano’s sound and touch.||Suitable for first-time (less serious) beginners to learn basics.||$300 – $9,000|
|Stage||An electronic musical instrument designed for use in live performances and music recordings.||Suitable for performers/artistes.||$1,200 – $7,000|
|Hybrid||A digital piano with acoustic feel and touch, designed to give users a real piano action.||Suitable for users who prefer to practise quietly (with headphones).||$1,600 – $23,000|
|Upright||A vertical piano with compact design that is usually put against a wall, with sound emitting from the back.||Suitable for serious beginners to learn the touch and fingering before mastering the precision of a grand piano.||$4,000 – $56,000|
|Grand||The largest, and often, most expensive piano with a dynamic range, rich resonance, diverse tonality, and responsive touch.||Suitable for professional musicians, especially in the field of classical music and jazz.||$8,000 – $140,000|
A brand new piano typically comes with a warranty that can last from 5 to 15 years. There are two types of warranty, full and limited. A full warranty is transferable from one owner to the next, and remains effective for the full period whereas a limited warranty is not transferrable.
Besides that, the piano dealer or music company might also provide a range of value-added services including but not limited to free delivery, complimentary tuning services, after-sales technical support and trade-in of your old piano.
How Much Does A Second-Hand Piano Cost?
On the other hand, if you find a brand new piano too expensive, getting a second-hand piano might be a more feasible option. While we tend to be skeptical of the quality of second-hand items, it is possible to get a used piano in good condition if you buy it from a credible piano dealer or check thoroughly before buying. Some places you can buy a second-hand piano include ThePiano.SG, Singapore Piano Hub, SG Used Piano, Asia Piano and Carousell.
While there are no hard and fast rules attached to price setting for used pianos, you can assess the value by taking into consideration a few factors.
#1 Duration Of Use
Since a piano is considered second-hand once sold, the quality of the piano in terms of physical condition and tonality can vary depending on how long it has been used. At times, you can check with the owner of the piano if he/she can provide the proof of purchase.
#2 Sound Quality
Checking for the sound quality is extremely important. You need to play the piano and get a sense of how it sounds and feels. In addition, you can engage a qualified piano technician to help you inspect the piano thoroughly. This is especially important if it is your first time buying a piano or not an experienced pianist. While this adds a little more to your budget, it is a necessary safety measure to prevent you from buying a mediocre piano (and having to spend more for repair and maintenance thereafter).
As mentioned earlier, some pianos come with full warranty that is transferrable to the new owner. It makes sense to pay a slightly higher price for a used piano with full warranty, pro-rated to the remaining eligibility period.
Depending on the platform where you are buying a second-hand piano from, it is likely that transportation and shipping fees (if any) are charged separately. You need to read the terms and conditions carefully and budget for additional moving cost.
#5 Brand/Model Series
Not every piano is equal. A branded piano from a later series may be valued higher compared to a series that has been discontinued. Taking note of the brand and model of the piano, in addition to other factors, can help you to make a fairer assessment of various second-hand options.
Below is a general price range across different types of second-hand pianos.
|Digital||$100 – $5,000|
|Stage||$400 – $3,000|
|Upright||$250 – $13,000|
|Grand||$5,000 – $70,000|
Brand New Vs. Second-Hand Piano: What Is The Price Difference?
Be it a brand new or second-hand piano, the price differs greatly between brands and product types. To have an accurate understanding of the price difference between the two options, we compared the prices between a few popular piano brands and model series.
Do take note that some second-hand pianos may belong to a series that has been discontinued, and it can be a challenge to compare prices of the exact model.
|Brand||Piano Type||New||Second-hand||Price Difference|
|Steinway & Sons||Upright||$85,000+
|Steinway & Sons||Grand||$150,000+
The price difference between a brand new and second-hand piano depends on many factors such as the brand, model, duration of use, and condition. If you are serious about learning piano for the longer term, it may be worthwhile to invest in a brand new piano that comes with warranty and after-sales technical support. On the other hand, if you are only planning to pursue as an interest, then getting a second-hand piano makes more financial sense.
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